5 reasons why free travel for women is revolutionary
“The criticism of this revolutionary idea is limited to calling it a ‘freebee’. The critics are perhaps only looking into their pockets. A few hundred rupees saved every month are nothing short of a boon for majority. And when a woman saves a penny it counts!"
1. Safe Commute
According to a survey conducted by Praja foundation, 47% women find commuting in Delhi unsafe. The same survey reported that a staggering 54% people don’t report crimes they witness. If the scheme gets successful in driving women toward DTC buses, both these numbers would most certainly go down. DTC buses these days are equipped with marshals and CCTV cameras, any day a safer transport then other private options.
2. Dip in crime
As per NCRB data, in 2017 about 1 lakh cases of kidnapping were registered out of which a staggering 75% were of women. Women are clearly more vulnerable to crimes than men. Most kidnapping, chain-snatching and rape cases occur during commute when women are not in the safe environment of their house or workplace. So basically with free travel, the Delhi government has taken it upon itself to ferry women safely to work and back.
3. Better education opportunities
According to a report by a famous economist Girija Borker, women in Delhi often choose lesser colleges to avoid travelling. Fear of harassment is forcing them to compromise on their careers. Free travel for women in DTC buses would ensure more women and hence a more comfortable environment in government buses.
4. Money matters
In 2018 when Delhi government hiked fares, it lost 4.2 lakh passengers as compared to the previous year. Which simply means the choice of commute in Delhi definitely depends on the cost for a large section of society. According to monster salary index survey, the average income of women in India is only 196 rupees per day. The critics better give a reason why 10-15 rupees of daily saving from this figure wouldn’t do a world of good for women.
5. More employment opportunities
Women can now travel across the city for work and for free. A daily wage worker from Bhajanpura can now commute all the way to South Delhi for work without caring about the fare! In fact, it would work both ways. Companies facing shortage of workforce can now employ more women from across the city.
The criticism of this revolutionary idea is limited to calling it a ‘freebee’. The critics are perhaps only looking into their pockets. A few hundred rupees saved every month are nothing short of a boon for majority. And when a woman saves a penny it counts! The positives are many and backed by data. Delhi government is uplifting the city to a standard where basic necessities don’t come hard for people.